En­car­na­cion’s 11th-in­ning HR lifts Jays over Ori­oles

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Ian Har­ri­son

TORONTO » Ed­win En­car­na­cion hit a three-run homer in the 11th in­ning off Ubaldo Jimenez, and Toronto Blue Jays beat the Bal­ti­more Ori­oles 5-2 in Tues­day night’s AL wild card game to ad­vance to a Di­vi­sion Se­ries matchup against Texas.

Jimenez re­lieved Brian Duensing with one out in the 11th, and Devon Travis sin­gled in a 1-1 pitch. Reign­ing AL MVP Josh Don­ald­son sin­gled on the next pitch, and Travis went all the way to third as left fielder Nolan Reimold bob­bled the ball.

En­car­na­cion sent the fol­low­ing pitch, a 91 mph fast­ball, soar­ing into the sec­ond deck in left. En­car­na­cion im­me­di­ately knew it was gone and raised both arms in tri­umph, in­dex fin­gers pointed sky­ward.

Fran­cisco Liri­ano re­tired five straight bat­ters on four ground­outs and a strike­out for the win after closer Roberto Osuna left with an in­jury.

Ori­oles closer Zach Brit­ton, who was per­fect in 47 save chances dur­ing the reg­u­lar sea­son, never got in the game as Ori­oles man­ager Buck Showal­ter saved him in case Bal­ti­more took a lead in ex­tra in­nings on the road.

Toronto opens the Di­vi­sion Se­ries at Texas on Thurs­day. Last year, the Blue Jays beat the Rangers in five-game Di­vi­sion Se­ries, sparked by Jose Bautista’s mem­o­rable bat flip fol­low­ing a tiebreak­ing, three­run homer in the sev­enth in­ning of Game 5. The teams brawled in May this year when Bautista was punched in the face by Rangers in­fielder Rougned Odor fol­low­ing a play at sec­ond base.

The roof was open at Rogers Cen­tre, for­merly SkyDome, where all 24 pre­vi­ous post­sea­son games had been played with it closed.

Jose Bautista led off the sec­ond against Chris Till­man with his fifth post­sea­son homer. Mark Trumbo, who led the ma­jor leagues with 47 home runs, gave Bal­ti­more a 2-1 lead in the fourth with a two-run homer off Mar­cus Stro­man.

Eze­quiel Car­rera’s RBI sin­gle chased Till­man in the fifth. AR­LING­TON, TEXAS » The Texas Rangers have de­cided who their start­ing pitcher will be for the AL Di­vi­sion Se­ries opener. Man­ager Jeff Banis­ter just wasn’t ready Tues­day to make it pub­lic.

Be­fore the Rangers worked out at home, and be­fore find­ing out who they will play, Banis­ter said he didn’t feel the need to an­nounce Thurs­day’s starter.

It will be All-Star left­hander Cole Hamels (15-5,


Toronto’s Ed­win En­car­na­cion cel­e­brates his game-win­ning walk-off three-run home run against the Bal­ti­more Ori­oles dur­ing the 11th in­ning in Toronto Tues­day.

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